The presidency of Donald Trump is becoming dangerous for Americans, deadly for our allies and surreal.
One can see this in the eyes of his Republican colleagues. Sen. Majority Leader Mitch McConnell sees it. House Republican leaders know it.
They took remarkable action Wednesday when they voted overwhelmingly with Democrats to condemn Trump’s withdrawal of U.S. troops from Turkey and his leaving longtime U.S. allies the Kurds with a target on their back.
The House passed a resolution 354-60 that stated the withdrawal is “beneficial to the adversaries of the United States government,” including Syria, Russia and Iran and calls on Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan to immediately end its attack on Syria.
1st District Rep. Jim Hagedorn, a Republican, voted in favor of the resolution. Rep. Collin Peterson, D-7th District, who represents Sibley County, did not vote.
The resolution also called for the White House to “present a clear and specific plan for the enduring defeat of ISIS.”
McConnell started his weekly news conference expressing “gratitude to the Kurds,” and that he “was sorry that we are where we are.”
In a meeting with Democrats Wednesday, Trump had a “meltdown” according to those who were there. He excoriated Democratic House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, calling her names to the point the she and Sen. Minority Leader Charles Schumer got up and left the room.
Trump went on to insult much respected Gen. Jim Mattis, his former defense secretary who resigned last year when Trump first tried to pull troops out of Syria. Trump said Mattis was “the world’s most overrated general.”
Vice President Mike Pence, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and National Security Advisor Robert O’Brien immediately flew to Turkey and negotiated a 5-day cease fire that Turkey is calling a pause.
That Pence and Pompeo moved quickly suggested Trump realized his mistake or they gave him no choice given the House vote.
Trump’s action likely left U.S. soldiers in the region ashamed and demoralized. Russian and Syrian forces put up pictures of the deserted U.S. outpost that reportedly had food still on tables.
Republicans and Democrats have made clear that the withdrawal from Turkey not only gives our enemies the upper hand, and not only erodes the trust of the United States around the world, it likely will give ISIS another foothold to attack the American homeland.
In another remarkable event, longtime Trump supporter Sen. Lindsay Graham stood in front of the television cameras and told America the blood of American lives will be on Trump’s hands as ISIS gets a foothold again now that American troops are not there to deter them.
Trump’s disasterous decisionmaking may be making it clear to Republicans that they need to replace the president. We hope so. America cannot accept another decision that puts American security, American standing and Americans themselves at risk.